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Moderate improvements in blood glucose levels could deliver significant benefits for people with diabetes in the UK and the NHS

Sanofi, Diabetes UK and JDRF have announced the publication of IMPACT 2 in the journal Diabetic Medicine. This new study shows that, if sustained, even modest improvement in blood glucose* levels can provide significantly improved outcomes for the 3.5 million2 people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK. As a result, if applied to the whole diabetes population, almost a million serious medical complications, such as blindness, amputation and kidney failure could be avoided over 25 years, improving the lives of people with diabetes.1 Better management of blood glucose levels over the same period could equate to a cost avoidance of £5.5 billion for the NHS.1

IMPACT 2 is a study based on data and population modelling. It is the outcome of a collaboration between Diabetes UK, JDRF and Sanofi, and the analysis was completed by IMS and the York Health Economics Consortium. It quantifies the patient and financial benefit over 25 years of earlier intervention for better controlling blood glucose. The findings highlight results that could have a significant impact for people with diabetes and NHS budgets:1

  • For people with Type 2 diabetes the figure of potentially preventable complications is 870,000 equating to a cost avoidance of £4.5 billion over 25 years for the NHS.
  • For people with Type 1 diabetes the figure of potentially preventable complications is 88,000 equating to a cost avoidance of just under £1 billion over 25 years for the NHS.

Chris Askew, Diabetes UK Chief Executive commented, “IMPACT 2 demonstrates that even small improvements in blood glucose levels can result in huge benefits for people with diabetes with the potential to stop 23,000 people suffering severe kidney failure, almost 160,000 leg ulcers and amputations and over 50,000 people suffering severe loss of vision. This should be a priority for all those involved in providing care for people with diabetes.” He continued, “Preventing Type 2 diabetes through public health initiatives is of course the best way of reducing spend long-term, however much greater efforts are needed to ensure all people with diabetes get the support and care they need for a good quality of life and better health outcomes.”

Karen Addington, Chief Executive of JDRF in the UK, agreed, adding, “People with Type 1 diabetes are routinely still receiving poorer care and are less likely to be meeting NICE recommended blood glucose targets, when compared to people with Type 2 diabetes. The IMPACT 2 results show the benefit to people living with Type 1 diabetes and the NHS in providing appropriate care, support and education to help people manage their condition.”